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.org/history. >> yesterday, a senate homeland security subcommittee on contract oversight looked at afghanistan reconstruction contracts. witnesses include contractors to receive money from the u.s. agency for international development and the army corps of engineers as well as defense department and usaid officials. missouri democratic senator clear ms. castle -- clare mccaskill chaired the two-hour hearing. if the witnesses have become -- i have a formal statement prepared but i have decided not to give a formal opening statement. and just express the reason for this hearing. this is not the first hearing we have had in the subcommittee on contract thing in our contingency operation. and i began working on this problem almost the day i wrought -- arrived in the senate. when i travel to iraq to do nothing but look at contracting oversight because i couldn't figure out how in the world things had gotten so out of control in terms of contacting in iraq. i went over to iraq and i realized why they had gotten out of control. contract and representatives were just a low man on the total bowl being
.s. policy in afghanistan and iraq. we want to begin the segment by talking with the defense policy reporter with bloomberg news. she joins us by phone. she has traveled with defense and that i ton patte iraq. talk about what you heard the defense secretary do while he was overseas. guest: it was interesting to watch secretary panetta and compare how he handled the trip and his interaction with troops and with foreign leaders to secretary gates. he has fairly big shoes to f ill, according to people who were quite complementary. leon panetta also has a lot of familiarity with u.s. military forces. forces. with the commanders and foreign leaders that he is meeting with and going to be interacting with. with his experience as cia director for more than two years before taking this job and in other capacities, for example, a member of iraq study group that did the independent assessment in 2006 of the war in iraq. host: was specifically was the defense secretary trying to accomplish on this trip? guest: he wanted to go out and touch base with the troops themselves and make that connection. it is
and afghanistan. and my belief that there is a smarter way to achieve our national security goals. and so, madam speaker, since that day i stood here in this spot to say over and over again that these wars are eroding our spiritual core. bankrupting us morally and fiscally. teaching our children that warfare is the new normal. i have delivered these speeches as a member of the majority and the minority when the president was a member of my party and when he was not, and today i am doing it for the 400th time. when i began the war in iraq was still quite popular. as was the president who launched it. but we spoke out anyway, refusing to bend on principle because we knew that we did not belong there. my colleagues, representative barbara lee and representative maxine waters and i, we called ourselves the triad, started the out of iraq caucus. we first -- forced the first house vote to bring our troops home. along the way i visited iraq, i tried and i learned on that trip and my opinion was confirmed against that very war, but at the same time it increased my admiration for our troops. gradually th
of honorable and distinguished service, but the fact remains that the fundamental realities in afghanistan haven't changed. "the new york times" put it plainly, noting that the general is, and i quote them, "the general is leaving behind a country racked by deep political instability whose fledging security forces are fighting a weakened but deadly insurgency that kills coalition troops and afghan civilians and officials nearly every day." that's a pretty damning assessment, mr. speaker, and it's accurate. in recent weeks two of president karzai's most powerful allies, including his brother, have been gunned down by the taliban. and ordinary afghan citizens are caught in the line of fire as never, never before. the u.n. recently reported that more afghan civilians were killed in the first half of 2011 than in any other six-month period since the war began. some these casualties are the accidental result of errant attacks and night raids by u.s. and nato forces. but the overwhelming majority of civilian deaths came at the hands of insurgents often using suicide bombers. there were nearly 1,
a reason why we are in iraq and libya and afghanistan. but having said that, let's face it, it would be ridiculous to assume that i'm making an appeal for democrats when what i'm talking about is those people who are vulnerable. because of our financial center cause people to lose their homes, it wasn't just democrats, there were democrats, republicans, independents, and those that have no faith in government that woke up in the morning, they lost their jobs, they lost their home, they lost their pension funds, they lost their savings, they had to pull their kids out of school, they lost their self-esteem, some lost their homes. i don't remember anywelfare reform we are talking about people that are registered democrats. these are americans that are expected -- that expected more from their government than just saying that we will be able to address your deeds in the by and by. and the very people that are aged, god knows we are not talking about a party label. we are talking about our sick or we are talking about medicaid, we are talking about medicare, when we talk about social sec
at military bases worldwide from iraq to afghanistan to guantanamo bay. most often, he travels with his group, which you have heard about. the cookies on the table are a tribute to that. they are the focus of a feature-length documentary that chronicles the band travels to entertain the troops. they have a website. they are doing a launch very soon where people can watch that. kfar the proceeds will benefit the gary sinise foundation. while dismissing the speculation that he is running for political office -- [laughter] but we might follow up on that today. our guest has been an outspoken critic of bureaucracy and red tape that often delays and prevents service members and veterans from getting care and benefits. he has said the nation is not doing enough to help disabled veterans and u.s. troops wounded in iraq and afghanistan. he has called on the government to -- and the private sector to spend more on victims of posttraumatic stress disorder and get them some help. he is a star who moonlights as a soldier's advocate. our speaker has questioned his own industry at times while producing fil
're at war for 10 years, in afghanistan and iraq at surge levels. we assume we're going to be fighting this war for 10 more years, with over 100,000 troops in afghanistan and oh, gosh, wait, we're going to withdraw our troops in 2014. $1 trillion in savings. i've got a better idea. let's pass a bill to cover the moon with yogurt that will cost $5 trillion today. and then let's pass a bill the next day to cancel that bill. we could save $5 trillion. wait, i've got a better idea. our debt is $14 trillion. let's come up with a new plan to spend $14 trillion, then rescind it the next day and let's save $14 trillion. this stuff is fiscal fantasy. you can't make this stuff up, mr. speaker. suggesting that we're going to be in a war at these levels for 10 more years when everybody knows we've already decided not to do that, that does not get us $1.3 trillion in spending cuts. only in washington can you add up math like that. we need real spending cuts. i yield myself an additional minute to say, this is getting serious, mr. speaker. very serious. we can't keep spending money we just don't hav
in iraq, afghanistan, and elsewhere. what we need to do is have a growth agenda. we need to reprioritize. so instead of subsidizing off-shore jobs, we are subsidizing the growth of manufacturing here in the united states. let me make my second point. this is what the is about. republicans put a bill on the floor that they call cut, cap, and balance. i called it cut, cap, balance, wink, and nod. it absolutely wasn't real. if you just lost your job, because it was out sourced. if you are the c.e.o., you made the million dollars, you get a $100,000 check in the mail tax cut. how is that fair? backbone of the american economy. and the bill on the floor was a kick to the stomach. we need solutions defend middle class than those who provide tax holes for the middle class. host: i want to ask about yesterday what was provided for the public? guest: if you were an auto broker, yeah, it was a good deal. but going into that deal, most was recouped. at the end of the process, yes, over $1 billion, if you are an auto worker, and you are checked your job, and we have a job analysis in the united stat
a loved one in afghanistan. ethan and stephanie, bowing here at arlington cemetery, lost their father on may 12 of this year. the sergeant, who was stationed at camp lejeune marine base, and another was sent with the mission to train afghan citizens to become police. the men had just sat down to dinner when a rogue trainee opened fire killing both men. in an email to his wife the day before he died, the sergeant said, and i quote, i don't trust them. i don't trust them for anything, not anything at all. this brings me to a quote from a.c. snow's recent column tiled "time to bring them home: let them live." mr. snow is a well-known correspondent in north carolina. and i quote, it seems we never run out of wars. it is as if one small country after another sends out a grave's invitation reading, we're having a war, please come. and uncle sam borrows millions to offer freedom our nation building. mr. speaker, i go back to the two little girls in this picture. how many more children will be at the grave site of a loved one? how many more have to known the pain of war? i further quote from
that they're bringing back, they are companies specifically going after returning iraq and afghanistan veterans to be able to hire them. it was interesting, we were talking about drilling and you go into a drilling platform and they say their favorite people to be able to hire are tank drivers returning from the war zone because they're used to driving equipment, looking on a screen and dealing with multiple things all at once. these are folks employing our veterans and they're engaged in providing great jobs. i was on a fracking site, being able to watch it. it's high tech job, people on computers, as well as people in pumping, trucks, people providing food, people providing the equipment, it's people with big wrenches and people with small computers. and you see this multitude of different jobs provided by oil and natural gas and by fossil fuels we're producing right here in america. we are at a moment that we can either say, we want all green jobs, we want to destroy the jobs producing fossil fuels, or we can say, let's do both. let's encourage the growth of green jobs but let's not
, secretary panetta and the president discussed implementation of our strategy in afghanistan, including consolidation and training afghan security forces, the reduction of u.s. troop levels that the president announced last month and process of transitioning lead security to the afghan government. the president thanked everyone for their service and said that he looked forward to working with them closely as they take up their important positions. >> any discussions about continuing concerns about weakening of the effort? >> not in this meeting. i believe we addressed that issue. the president feels very strongly that because of the success we have had in making progress towards achieving our goals, defeating, disrupting -- dismantle and defeat, reducing the -- stopping the momentum of the taliban and training of afghan security forces, we can begin to draw down our surge forces. 10,000 this year and 30,000 next year. >> has treasury secretary geithner told the president that he would like to leave -- >> not that i'm aware of no. >> i think he will be here for the foreseeable future. [c
not be able to do things militarily to support our troops in afghanistan and iraq. i view this, i think it bears close watching, but there is a perception that somehow we're giving our china, india, brazil and other countries an advantage. i view this program as a two-way street. it does provide a degree of access to american companies and so i would be also reluctant -- i reluctantly oppose your amendment but i can assure you that both of us feel very strongly that it bears watching. it has borne some fruit. mr. frelinghuysen: it's not money wasted, it's not money given away to competitors. thank you for yielding. mr. visclosky: but again, i think it draws attention that we should be closely monitoring these funds. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from fey rise? >> i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. broun: i'd like to yield to dr. harris from maryland. mr. harris: let me briefly address this so we can move on. we only cut $6 million out of the $8 million. there's budget language further on t
the war in afghanistan, we must fix the politics." host: back to the phones and the public's discussion, asheville, n.c., george -- joyce. caller: we do not have any say in what congress says it through our president except through voting. i call them all the time and make my voice heard. sometimes they are not nice to me. i think that the biggest problem in this country are the illegals that come in here to of our country and a protest. the taxes of this country are taking care of them. they will hit the streets in georgia this time. arizona and other states. host: you said you had had contact? caller: just about my complaints with social security and medicare. host: their response to you? caller: they just listen to me sometimes. sometimes they say thank you for calling. host: you have spoke to them on the phone? caller: i was complaining more about illegals, i think that is the biggest problem of the nation. host: i am going t let you go now. we have this biggest -- we have this twitter message. host: auburn they'll, florida, you are on washington journal. caller: they never listen t
in afghanistan alone to prop up a corrupt and incompetent karzai government. how about ending wasteful subsidies to big agriculture companies? how about asking billionaire hedge fund managers to pay the same tax rates as their secretaries? the truth is that the best way to deal with our long-term fiscal situation is to grow our economy. that means creating jobs and putting people back to work. the last election i thought was about jobs. we haven't talked about jobs at all since the new republican majority became -- came to power. that means investing in things like education and infrastructure and green technology and medical research. that's the kind of economic future the american people deserve. the boehner default plan would take us exactly in the wrong direction and urge my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to reject it. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from california has 5 1/2 minutes remaining. the gentleman is recognized. mr. dreier: mr. speaker, as i listen to my friend from the other side
Search Results 0 to 13 of about 14